Beacon Lesson Plan Library

Listen Up

Roberto Gonzalez-Trigo
Miami-Dade County Schools

Description

Having a great ear is a skill that must be constantly exercised. This lesson allows your students to enhance their listening skills while giving them the opportunity to lead the class in a Play and Echo Game.

Objectives

The student performs simple music phrases by ear.

Materials

-CD Player
-Metronome
-Piano or keyboard
-Each student needs:
A. Woodblock
B. Mallet

Preparations

1. Print out attached file
2. Place a woodblock and mallet on each student's desk.

Procedures

1. Welcome the students and as soon as they are all settled, ask them to raise their hands if they want to come up to the front of the class for a demonstration.

2. Choose one student and ask him/her to bring the woodblock and mallet from his/her desk. Pick up a woodblock and a mallet and play a simple 4 beat pattern, then ask the student to play it back for you.

3. Choose another volunteer and have that second student join the first volunteer and bring a woodblock and a mallet.

4. This time, instruct both students to listen as you play another simple 4 beat rhythm, then volunteer #1 should play right after you, with volunteer #2 playing the same rhythm immediately after volunteer #1 has played.

5. Thank both students for their participation and ask them to return to their desks with their woodblocks and mallets.

6. Ask the class: “What skill were these students using during this activity?” Call on students whose hands are raised to answer the question until one of them says “listening.- Instruct the class that musicians practice the art of listening constantly in order to become better musicians.

7. Ask the class: “How is it that in the loud and noisy cafeteria, children can still hear and focus their attention on their friends?” After discussing this question with the class you can tell them that it is a listening “skill” that they have developed over time, and in much the same respect this skill is used by professional musicians all the time.

8. Separate the class into groups of 2-3 students.

9. Using the rhythmic patterns found in the attached file, play each pattern once and have each group play it back to you. Make sure to tell the students that the patterns get progressively more difficult.

10. Record their performance levels using the student assessment sheet found in the attached file.

11. Choose one student to come before the class and be a class leader. Inform the class that they will now play the game “Play and Echo.- The class leader will play a simple rhythmic pattern he/she has already heard in the lesson and the class will play it back for them. You may separate the class now into two sections and have them compete for accuracy. Scores on their performances can be written on the board and thus will provide motivation. After five minutes or so of play, give the winning team a reward or congratulate them on their spectacular performance.

12. Collect all the woodblocks and mallets.

13. Instruct the class that now they will continue to strengthen their listening skills by singing.

14. Review proper breathing techniques for singing and bring attention to posture.

15. Using the piano or keyboard, play middle C and at the same time sing the pitch “C.- Have the students sing it back to you.

16. Separate the class into groups of 2-3 students.

17. Using the melodic patterns found in the attached file, play each pattern once and have each group sing echo the pattern. Make sure to tell the students that the patterns get progressively more difficult.

18. Record students' performance level using the student assessment sheet found in the attached file.

19. To wrap up this activity, inform the students that they will continue to play the echo game though singing instead of playing an instrument. Choose one student (strong/confident singer) to come up before the class and be a class leader. The class leader will sing a simple melodic pattern he/she has already heard in the lesson and the class will sing it back for them. You may separate the class now into two sections and have them compete for accuracy. Scores on their performances can be written on the board and thus will provide for motivation. After 5 minutes or so of playing this game give the winning team a reward or hearty congratulations.

Assessments

This is a formative assessment. An answer key is provided in the associated file.
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